People gathered to cut a blue ribbon in front of a building, with grass in foreground
Roswell Park leaders and community members cut the ribbon on the Community Outreach & Engagement Center in October 2023.

Roswell Park Named to Forbes’ America’s Best Employers for Diversity, Honored by NAACP Chapter

Chief Diversity Officer Crystal Rodriguez-Dabney receives Minority Bar Association of Western New York Excellence in Promoting Diversity Award as Roswell Park Community Outreach and Engagement Center is presented with Buffalo NAACP 2024 President's Award

  • Cancer center, key leaders recognized for team-wide and individual efforts
  • Rodriguez-Dabney marks first year as Senior VP and Chief Diversity Officer
  • Member of American Cancer Society’s new Chief Diversity Officer Roundtable

BUFFALO, N.Y. — The Roswell Park Comprehensive Cancer Center community proudly celebrates a year of growth and achievement in its ongoing work to advance diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) in all areas of operations and impact. Founded in 1898 as the first center dedicated to cancer research, Roswell Park has been recognized for its efforts to advance DEI, health equity and access — both as a team and through the individual efforts of its Chief Diversity Officer. 

Roswell Park was named to the America’s Best Employers For Diversity 2024 list, compiled by Forbes in partnership with research firm Statista. This is the second time Roswell Park has been included in this ranking, now in its seventh year. Based in part on survey results from 170,000 people working for U.S. organizations with at least 1,000 employees, America’s Best Employers for Diversity recognizes companies that have remained steadfast in their commitment to DEI. Participants were asked to anonymously rate companies based on approach to diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) as it pertains to such criteria as age, gender, ethnicity, disability and sexual orientation. 

Additionally, the Roswell Park Community Outreach & Engagement Center, which opened in fall 2023 as a space to nurture partnerships, empowerment, well-being and health, will on June 22 be recognized with the Buffalo NAACP President’s Award — the highest honor conferred by any NAACP chapter. The awards committee selected the Outreach and Engagement Center for this distinguished recognition “for its service to spread cancer awareness and the opportunity for decision making and healthcare inclusiveness within the community.”

Less than a year since she joined Roswell Park as Senior Vice President and Chief Diversity Officer, Crystal Rodriguez-Dabney, Esq., LLM, CDP, has been recognized for her impact both regionally and nationally. She recently was presented with the Minority Bar Association of Western New York’s Excellence in Promoting Diversity Award, given to a senior executive who has demonstrated exceptional commitment and achievement in fostering DEI within the legal profession, and was appointed to the American Cancer Society (ACS) Chief Diversity Officer Roundtable, a new national panel formed to address the unequal burden of cancer in diverse and multicultural communities. 

“To achieve these honors and goals has been truly humbling,” says Rodriguez-Dabney. “I’ve worked tirelessly on DEI efforts throughout my career, and to be recognized for it is such an honor. We’ve been relentless in addressing, reassessing and creating efforts to further elevate and expand our team’s work to create opportunity both inside and outside the cancer center. Being nationally ranked in 2024 demonstrates that those efforts are working.”

“We are proud to see our team’s work to ensure that we are an outstanding resource and partner for our community recognized on these prominent platforms,” says Candace S. Johnson, PhD, President, CEO and M&T Bank Presidential Chair in Leadership. “As Roswell Park continues to evolve and grow, we remain committed to upholding the principles of diversity, equity and inclusion, guided by Crystal’s visionary leadership.”


From the world’s first chemotherapy research to the PSA prostate cancer biomarker, Roswell Park Comprehensive Cancer Center generates innovations that shape how cancer is detected, treated and prevented worldwide. Driven to eliminate cancer’s grip on humanity, the Roswell Park team of 4,000 makes compassionate, patient-centered cancer care and services accessible across New York State and beyond. Founded in 1898, Roswell Park was among the first three cancer centers nationwide to become a National Cancer Institute-designated comprehensive cancer center and is the only one to hold this designation in Upstate New York. To learn more about Roswell Park Comprehensive Cancer Center and the Roswell Park Care Network, visit, call 1-800-ROSWELL (1-800-767-9355) or email

Media Contact

Annie Deck-Miller, Director of Public Relations